I have avoided many of the stock Apple apps for quite some time because they tended to not offer the features I wanted and the iCloud system behind them was irratic, slow and at times would lose data completely.
Over time, however, this seems to have improved and the recent changes to Reminders, Siri and Notes has made me look again. Reminders, an app I have never used in the past, is now so incredibly flexible to use thanks to the Siri integration. I can be vieiwing an email and say ‘Remind me of this at 7pm’ to see it pop up later, I can also set up any reminder in the blink of an eye and it is fast becoming more useful to me than the standard calendar which is how I have managed my days for many years.
Notes is still not up to the level I need and so a third party solution, Notefile, is still my preferred choice, but I can see this changing soon if I make the effort to move everything over.
Photos are saved to iCloud and it has become routine for me to store very few photos on my devices, but to simply view them from the cloud.
Handoff is brilliant as is Messages which I now receive on my iPad, iPhone and Mac, and I have even delved into the world of trusting iCloud with the documents I am working on.
News has slowly become a daily use app because it seems to offer something that I do not see in the likes of Flipboard. I have no idea what that is, but there is merit in the fact that it mirrors the look of Reminders and so many other default Apple apps.
I don’t know what it is, but it is pleasing to see Apple working on how things work rather than concentrating so much on new features. Something is changing in the background and the Apple eco-system is starting to grow up, to the point that I am not fighting it anymore.
I do still use Dropbox and many Google services, however, and suspect that will remain true for a long time to come.